Liverpool City Region workers will be encouraged to walk and cycle to work as part of a new campaign.
The ‘Arrive Happy’ initiative by Merseytravel and partners is being launched on Monday (15 January) and aims to promote the health and wellbeing benefits of the transport methods.
Walkers, cycling groups, mental health campaigners, local businesses and academics will be on hand at Mann Island’s Avenue HQ in Liverpool to explain how walking or cycling as part of your commute can lift your mood, boost energy, reduce stress levels and improve sleep.
Transport chiefs will kick off the campaign at 7am on the day which has become known as ‘Blue Monday’ and is considered to be the UK’s ‘saddest day’ of the year.
Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor for the Liverpool City Region, says: “Arrive Happy is an imaginative and innovative campaign that supports two of my key pledges – to support green sustainable travel and promote better health and mental wellbeing.
“Walking and cycling for 30 minutes a day can be both personally rewarding and socially beneficial. It’s also true that a happier and healthier workforce is also going to be more productive and motivated. These are small changes in lifestyle with potential to deliver big and life-changing impacts.”
Sandra Gilbert, CEO of Mind Wirral, adds: “It is widely recognised that physical exercise really benefits our mental wellbeing. Start small because everyday changes to your physical activity really do count.
“If you start walking or cycling to work one day a week then celebrate your achievements. And if you need to speak to someone about a mental health issue contact your local services for information and support.”
NHS guidelines recommend that adults aged 19-64 should aim to be active for 150 minutes a week, which can be achieved by making short local journeys on foot or by bike such as getting off the bus a stop earlier and walking for 10 minutes or cycling to the station instead of taking the car.